A music therapist in Florida is using his guitar to help people dealing with alzheimer’s disease.
Dan Gasby, the husband to restaurateur and lifestyle guru B. Smith, continues to defend his decision to date another woman as his wife battles Alzheimer’s disease.
Gasby, 64, sparked outrage and a heated debate last week after acknowledging his relationship with Alex Lerner, 53, as he serves as his wife’s caregiver. He even revealed that Lerner has a room in the house he shares with Smith.
While appearing on “The View” Thursday, Gasby said his wife of nearly three decades encouraged him to move on with his life after she learned of her crushing diagnosis.
“When we got the diagnosis at Mount Sinai … she stopped me, put her hand on my arm and … she said to me, ‘I want you to go on,'” Gasby said. “I’m not doing anything we didn’t discuss.”
“View” co-host Sunny Hostin, who is friends with Smith and Gasby, acknowledged the difficulty of caring for someone with Alzheimer’s, but criticized his decision to have Lerner in their home when Smith doesn’t have the mental capacity to consent. Earlier, Gasby said Smith “is 69 years old … but she’s a toddler.”
“I could have easily placed her into a facility and I would not do that,” Gasby said. “This notion of vows, I’m keeping my vows. … Vows are to protect, to care for.”
Fellow co-host Meghan McCain interjected, “Also in sickness and in health.”
Gasby has been married to Smith since 1992. Smith revealed her diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2014, saying that in the years before she was diagnosed she noticed she was repeating herself and forgetting things.
He first revealed his romance with Lerner on the Facebook page he shares with Smith back in December, as well as in a profile published in The Washington Post on Jan. 28. The news was met with backlash from fans.
“Every kind of bad thing you can possibly imagine I was accused of,” Gasby said. “The other side of that coin was also because the person that I am now involved with is white, the racial innuendo is devastating.”
Smith came to fame as a model, becoming one of the first black women to land the cover of Mademoiselle. She later entered the food space, becoming a restaurateur and opening multiple eponymous restaurants in New York and Washington while also launching her own home collection and magazine, along with having a regular “Today” show gig.
Contributing: Anika Reed
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